Deron Williams. The most hated man in Utah Jazz history?
Charles Barkley once said, “I may be wrong, but I doubt it.” How is it like to live the life of the most hated person in any community? This sounds like a good tag line for a film. This was once held by Carlos Boozer who was rumored to milk injuries. Deron was the sweetest angel you can ever find. How things done changed. D-Wills is rocking the New Jersey Nets jersey? What, I don’t even…let me stomach this for a bit.
The Jazz fans used to kill Carlos Boozer, but who knew that Deron Williams was going to be that guy? No one did. Jerry Sloan and the inner circle brain trust did a great job at keeping Williams’ feud quiet. Many people did not see this coming at all. The trade was a shocker.
Williams helped lead the Jazz to the 2007 Western Conference Finals. Through 447 games, he’s averaging 17.4 points, 9.3 assists, 1.1 steals, 3.3 rebounds, 80% FT, 3PT .356, and FG .463. His career effective field goal percentage thus far is .507 and career assists percentage is 42.1. In short, he’s really good. He has been snubbed of All Star appearances. He earned more.
Here is the recap for anyone living under a rock – The Jazz shockingly traded away Deron Williams, the team’s franchise player since Karl Malone and John Stockton, to the Nets for Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, two first round draft picks, and $3 million in cash.
Every basketball nut had to sit there and think, “Seriously?”
The long time coach, Jerry Sloan, resigned along with his assistant coach Phil Johnson, after 24 years of leading Utah’s sidelines. There were some murmurs, but it’s likely that he resigned because of the spiraling relationship with Deron Williams. Deron tried to downplay everything, but after the organization traded him away quick style, you knew that Williams must have done something bad. How can any player not get along with Sloan? He has the credibility to back him including getting to the Finals twice.
Karl Malone, John Stockton, Carlos Boozer, and many others, got along with him just fine. What was Deron’s problem to push Sloan out (if true)? From a fan’s perspective, this is likely the only thing that one can deduce. It is also possible that the Jazz told Sloan that they were trading away Williams to rebuild. Sloan was too tired and old to go through that again. That might be another reason for the sudden resignation after the loss to his old team, the Chicago Bulls. Who knows.The truth will never reveal itself since that is between Deron, Sloan, and the Jazz front office.They traded him to a squad with a terrible roster while the Jazz got some good pieces back. Sounds like punishment to me.
The situation says (not a Jersey Shore reference) more about Deron. He’s not the type of leader that can lead a team to a title. This is not an indictment of Deron’s character. Nope. No way. The rift between coach and player, and Williams’ non-committal resistance to an extension, shows that he can bail out at any time. That’s not a good look.
So he got a great long time coach and assistant coach to resign and an organization was left to rebuild…sounds like the most hated man in Utah Jazz history. Good luck New Jersey because he currently doesn’t sound like he wants to stick around there either.